Job: Painter – The Vanilla Workshop

Job Title *

Company/Organization *
The Vanilla Workshop

Job Description *
We do a lot of things here at The Vanilla Workshop. At the core of what’s going on here is the design, innovation and refinement of the bicycles we craft for our customers. We’re looking for someone that likes challenges, who communicates well, is good-natured and who feels at home in a shop environment. A mantra at our shop is that if it isn’t going to be 100%, or damn close, we’re not going to do it. As part of this, we will hire someone who is very particular about details.

The “painter” role covers everything from prep (more of an ability/willingness to do all prep when the assistant is unavailable, or needs extra help), to all aspects of spraying and all aspects of finish work.
The Painter will also share in keeping track of supplies needs, keeping the work space clean, identifying places where the process can be improved, tools that need repair/replacement.
Ultimately this paint position does the same level of technical painting that the Lead Painter does, minus some of the administrative duties, meetings and scheduling.

Primary Duties


-Spray primer, color and clear coating.
-Graphics application.
-Basic powder coating.
-Paint repairs.
-Update inventory lists as flag numbers are reached.
-Execute Quality Control with Paint Shop Manager and Vanilla QC point person.
-Finish Work.

Prep & Finishing:

-Backup for the prep of all incoming frames.
-Backup on buffing and finishing work on frames.
-Backup prep of masking materials.
-Support training of Workshop Assistant in paint shop.


-Participate in weekly Master Schedule meeting with lead painter.
-Support paint production schedule and communicate status of customer bikes and projects. If delays are foreseen, communicate correction plans for addressing them.
-Maintain cleaning schedule: daily paint area & booth cleaning and once a month clean other areas.
-Accurately and fastidiously follow zones manual, process documents and training manuals.
-Make supply runs as needed.
-Always think about ways to improve process, tooling, the materials that we use, how to be more efficient with everything that we do. If you have an idea, bring it to the table!

Experience and Skills

-Knowledge of bicycle painting industry, including: liquid paint application, powder coating, graphics application, finish work, surface prep.
-Excellent communication, coordination and customer service skills.
-Proficiency of paint application skills.
-Workflow development and schedule coordination skills, along with basic supervision or personnel management abilities.

Benchmarks and Wage Ranges

The Painting Assistant is a full time position. The wage range is $15-$18 an hour, depending on experience and proficiency in duties listed above. Increases in hourly wage will be based on the increased proficiency and quality of paint production and smooth functioning of production workflows and will be considered at yearly reviews.


The Painter role is a full time position, is eligible for health insurance at 90 days from hire, as well as PTO, as per the Vanilla PTO Policy. All employees are eligible for profit sharing based on the Profit Sharing Policy at 90 days from date of hire.

How to Apply *

If you feel that you’re a good fit, please apply by email. In the body of the email, state the length of your last two jobs and your highest level of education completed. Also attach a one-page resume and a one-page cover letter describing your life experience as it applies to this job, including three work references and any experience with bicycles or the making of things to:

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.